US builders’ confidence dips in January

Photo credit:   Michael Patrick

The group’s latest report found December’s unexpected jump in confidence among builders was followed by a fall of one point in the Housing Market Index. The dip followed a drop of 9.8 per cent in housing starts in December, the largest percentage decrease since April 2013. The dip, though, was lower than predicted by many experts polled by Reuters, with last year recording an overall increase in housing starts of 18.3 per cent.

“Confidence has essentially leveled out and is holding at a solid level,” said NAHB Chairman Rick Judson, a home builder from Charlotte, N.C. “Many markets continue to improve and this bodes well for future home sales.”

Indeed, the outlook is positive for housebuilding in America, according to the NAHB.

“Rising home prices, historically low mortgage rates and significant pent-up demand will drive a continuing, gradual recovery in the year ahead,” added NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.

“However, the pace of the recovery could be stronger were it not for rising construction costs and inaccurate appraisals that are keeping some home sales from going through.”